Law and Policy Recommendations for Tightening Elephant Ivory Trade Laws in Thailand

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Surasak Boonrueang


The article summarizes research findings extracted from the research report entitled “Law and Policy Recommendations for Tightening Elephant Ivory Trade Laws in Thailand” (the report), submitted to World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF Thailand). The article summarizes legal and policy options viable for the change in law and policy regulating ivory trade in Thailand. The objective of the study in the report is to analyze the possibility of implementing the policy prohibiting ivory trade leading to ivory export. Two pieces of legislation, namely Wild Animal Reservation and Protection Act B.E. 2562 (2019) (WARPA 2019) and Elephant Ivory Act B.E. 2558 (2015) (EIA 2015), were examined. This study aims to uncover whether this policy can be implemented by the end 2022.

The report found that the measures under existing laws can be partly employed to implement the policy. This is because domestic trade of ivory can be made under a certain existing law. Hence, full implementation of the policy may require some further law reform or amendments. Additionally, some applicable rules under WARPA 2019 and EIA 2015 remain inconsistent. Such inconsistency gives rise to the problem of implementing the laws to regulate illegal ivory. Lack of subordinate laws providing detailed rules is another problem. The absence of certain rules means that it remains uncertain and ambiguous how the law will deal a particular point. The findings emphasize the necessity of introducing certain set of recommendations for policy implementation.

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